The ghoul is a monstrous creature from Arabic folklore that appears in the form of a human and feasts on dead bodies and rotting cadavers. The name comes from the Arabic word “ghul”, which literally means “demon”.
The ghoul is a horrible abomination who lives in cemeteries and graveyards and feeds on the moldering corpses of the dead. It considers human flesh a delicacy and at night, under cover of darkness, it will dig up coffins and break them open in order to devour the human remains inside.
Some people say ghouls are human beings who have died and risen from the grave. Others claim that they are demons who appear in human form. Still more believe that ghouls were once a race of people who became trapped in underground caverns and, in the endless darkness, resorted to cannibalism to stay alive.
Although it prefers dead and rotting bodies, a hungry ghoul will not hesitate to prey on the living. They often lure unwary travelers to lonely desert wastes and remote ruins where it can attack them. After the ghoul kills you, it will devour your corpse, chewing the flesh from your bones and greedily sucking the warm blood from your veins.
Sometimes, ghouls are able to change shape and disguise themselves as a human or an animal. Often, they will take the form of the person they just ate. One way to tell a ghoul back then was by its feet. No matter what shape or form they take, ghouls will always have hooves.
One ancient story, tells of a young Arabic prince who was out hunting in the desert when he came across a beautiful young woman. She was crying and he asked her what was wrong. She told him she was the daughter of a king from the far-off land of India. She said she had become separated from her entourage when she fell off her horse and she was now lost, frightened and alone in the unfamiliar desert.
Taking pity on the beautiful girl, the prince lifted her up and put her sitting behind him on his horse. Together, they headed towards the prince’s home, but as they were passing by an ancient ruin, the girl asked if they could stop for a few minutes because she needed to go to the toilet.
She takes so long about her business that the prince grew impatient and went to look for her. He saw her crouching among the ancient ruins, surrounded by five or six hideous, grey-skinned children.
Listening closely, he overheard her saying, “My darlings, today, I have brought you a fat and juicy young man…”
“Bring him to us, Mother,” cried one of the disgusting, drooling wretches.
“We shall fill our stomachs with his flesh,” cried another.
When the prince heard this, he was overcome by fear and began to tremble. He knew that he had been tricked by a family of ghouls. Terrified, he ran back to his horse and managed to escape before the young woman emerged from the ruins.